In The Margins

In The Margins Project

As part of the HERE WE ARE programme, in this project our lead artist Jon Adams will collaborate with DAISY member organisations to create interventions within Reigate Library this Autumn, prior to its renovation in the new year. 

‘In the Margins’ aims to empower marginalised disabled individuals and amplify their life experiences by utilising different sections of the library as platforms for storytelling and dialogue. By engaging and framing the project around library categories such as ‘travel’, ‘health’, ‘Romance’ and the ‘Childrens’ area, this project will tell their life stories in reference to the Library areas. Visitors will go on a journey through the library sections, discovering and exploring these stories through small and large scale interventions to foster understanding, empathy, and inclusion.

About The Project

Designed and created by Jon Adams in collaboration with the DAiSY member organisations, these interventions and artworks will be both large, to fill spaces or walls in Reigate Library, as well as small and discrete, hidden in books or tucked away to be discovered. These artworks will tell the stories of our marginalised artists and lead visitors on a journey around the library.

The project is supported as part of the HERE WE ARE Project, funded by Arts Council England.

About The Partner

Our host partner for In the Margins is the wonderful Reigate Library, which is where you can visit the exhibition and installation. Click here for a virtual tour, and more information on accessibility and parking.

At Surrey Libraries, we see the benefits of libraries as performance, workshop and exhibition spaces, extending the reach and accessibility of cultural engagement to the public.  Not only do we offer access to resources for free, but we are also extending our spaces to become cultural venues.

About the Member Organisations

Art Matters

Established in 1995, Art Matters is a community arts studio and centre of wellbeing, mindfulness and growth, aiming to connect communities and provide creative pathways to recovery. The studio offers a person-centred and supportive environment, in which service users are encouraged to explore their creativity, curiosity, and develop new skills and confidence, working as artists alongside experienced and creative staff and volunteers.

Bloomin’ Arts

Bloomin’ Arts is driven by the voice of adults with disabilities to provide high quality opportunities in the creative arts. Each individual develops their artistic talents and builds valuable connections with our local and artistic community. Independence and physical, social and emotional wellbeing is our aim.


Orpheus is an independent specialist college in Surrey that increases the confidence and skills of young disabled adults through the performing arts. We believe that every young disabled person should have the same opportunities as their non-disabled peers.  We offer a holistic learning programme, a supported housing scheme and a domiciliary support service.

Lead Artist: Jon Adams

Jon is both a contemporary artist, Autistic advocate and researcher. He makes a variety of work in many differing media often referencing his Autism, Synaesthesia and Dyslexia, all interwoven with history, science, time and his past experiences. He’s shown in galleries such as Royal Academy, Tate Modern and been commissioned by many arts and science organisations including projects for Parliament, London 2012, the Autism Research Centre Cambridge and to perform his work on stage. He advocates for the rights of Neurodivergent people to fully access the arts, funding, health care and to coproduce relevant research.

You can follow Jon on Instagram @CorvidDrawingJon

Jon Adams - Lead Artist

So, do you feel you belong? And if you do, where and how do you feel you belong? If you don’t feel, why don’t you feel you belong? Do you seek belonging? Do you desire to be seen?

I feel our stories, our experience and expectations should be written on a full page and not just in the margins nor in invisible ink.

What would you make, write or place in or about both?

Showcase Event at Reigate Library

Thursday 8 February we held a busy Showcase event to open the In the Margins exhibition. Visitors enjoyed a drop-in showcase of artworks, talks, performances, refreshments & activities.

Visit our blog for a guest post by contributing member Art Matters to find out more about their piece, titled We See You, and about the evening.

All photography credit: Cristina Schek @cristinaschek